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Electronics Industry Action Agenda sets out ten-year vision for growth.



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JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

Senator the Hon Richard Alston Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts

The Hon Ian Macfarlane, MP Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources

Electronics Industry Action Agenda sets out ten-year vision for growth

The Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, Senator Richard Alston, and the Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources, Mr Ian Macfarlane, today launched the Electronics Industry Action Agenda, which aims to increase the industry's already significant contribution to the Australian economy by doubling electronics industry exports and turnover by 2008.

The Action Agenda, developed by the Australian Government in partnership with a Strategic Industry Leaders Group chaired by Mr Bruce Thompson, Chief Executive Officer of KeyCorp Limited, recognises that Australia's electronics industry is diverse and underpins many key industries.

The implementation of the Action Agenda will involve agencies such as Invest Australia working with Australia's electronics industry to promote investment - both nationally, and internationally under the Technology Australia brand - and co-operative action to spur industry growth and innovation over the next decade.

"This shows that both the Government and industry are strongly committed to supporting the future growth and sustainability of Australia's electronics industry,"Mr Macfarlane said.

Speaking at the launch of the Action Agenda at the 9th World Electronics Forum in Sydney, Senator Alston said the Action Agenda complements the findings of the recent report Enabling our Future, which included the recommendation that a broad platform be established to assist in the development of Australia's ICT industry.

The electronics industry is an important contributor to Australia's economy. In 2000/01, the industry directly employed nearly 33,000 people and had a turnover of $8.7 billion, representing 1.3 per cent of Australia's GDP. During the same period exports totalled $4.9 billion representing more than three per cent of Australia's total exports.

The Action Agenda sets out strategies for the future aimed at unifying the industry, raising its profile both within Australia and overseas, better commercialising its strong research and development and exploiting lucrative global markets.

Industry will take a lead role in implementing the Action Agenda recommendations. An industry-led Implementation Group has been established to champion, monitor and guide the implementation of the Action Agenda. The Australian Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association (AEEMA), which represents the information and communications technology (ICT) electrical and electronic manufacturing industries, will provide secretariat services to the Group.

More information about the Action Agenda and copies of the report can be found at www.industry.gov.au/agendas

Media contact: Simon Troeth (Senator Alston's office) (02) 6277 7480 or (0439) 425 373 Kirsty Boazman (Mr Macfarlane's office) (02) 6277 7580 or (0412) 171 444

CMR 03-132 152/03